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2016-02-18 | Discussion Paper

Intertemporal choice shifts in households: Do they occur and are they good?

Carlsson, F. and X. Yang. 2013. Intertemporal choice shifts in households: Do they occur and are they good?. Working Papers in Economics, No 569, University of Gothenburg.
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Abstract: We examine whether and to what extent joint choices are more or less patient and time - consistent than individual choices in households. We use data from an artefactual field experiment where both individual and joint time preferences were elicited. We find a substantial shift from individual to joint household decisions. Interestingly, joint decisions do not only generate beneficial shifts, i.e., patient and time - consistent shifts. On the contrary, a majority of the observed shifts are impatient and time - inconsistent shifts. A number of observable characteristics are significantly correlated with these shifts in preferences from individual decisions to joint decisions.